January 21, 2014

From the Vice Chancellor's Suggestion Box

Suggestion: Respondents to the Vice Chancellor’s Suggestion Box have made a number of cost savings suggestions on consolidating and standardizing the purchase of office equipment to get better prices.

People have written with excellent ideas about how we could work as an institution to standardize the use of supplies to increase our buying power — on everything from lab equipment and supplies to printer cartridges and computers.

We are committed to providing everyone at Vanderbilt the tools necessary to perform his or her work. At the same time, our procurement team is actively seeking more efficient and cost-effective ways to obtain all of our office supplies and equipment, including items ranging from ink cartridges and paper to computers. Where it makes sense, we will increasingly encourage standardization to take advantage of our large scale and buying power to obtain lower prices.

It is also up to each of us to make the best use of what we have. Because more than 20,000 staff and faculty work here, even small steps we all take as individuals have a large collective impact. For example, as a means to save toner and paper, we should print documents only when necessary. Turning out lights in unused areas and during off-hours and conserves energy and saves money for everyone. Finally, recycling is a practice we strongly encourage. We receive rebates from our waste vendors for cardboard, paper, plastics, aluminum and other metals.